Rainbow Day

6 Nov 2007


This past weekend was the Tasmanian Craft Fair held at Deloraine every year on the first weekend in November, a long weekend in northern Tasmania.


Deloraine is a small rural township north of Launceston and remembered from my childhood as the place we always stopped to buy an ice cream on the way to my Grannie's further up the coast.


Some years ago the highway bypassed the township and made it a much more pleasant place to visit. It no longer has big trucks and impatient cars whizzing through its centre cutting the town in half.


The craft fair is a big deal with lots of visitors and brou ha but there were sheep dog trials going on at the same time and we sat and ate some afternoon tea while we watched the action. These plovers eggs in their "nest" by the arena fence were less frustrating to watch than those stupid sheep who did everything they could to make the sheepdog go insane .


And after we had visited all the exhibitors twice we spent some quiet time by the beautiful Meander River which has always been a favourite with my children.


Further up the river people were fishing and there were plenty of ducks looking for food handouts but below the weir the river was quiet.


Partly because of the bypass and partly because of the success of the craft fair Deloraine has re invented itself as an artistic community. It is deep in the heart of rural Tasmania, surrounded by family and corporate farms . The artistic element and its green tendencies doesn't always sit well with the more pragmatic rural needs but they seem to have found a way to live together and thrive.


Personally I found the craft fair a little tired and samey this year. I don't go every year, it's two years since my last visit.While I like seeing craft stalls that I have seen before as well as new artisans, some of the stalls seemed to have the same stock as last time with no new creations. Perhaps it was just me. I was trying to look critically because I had planned to have a stall there next year with my dolls. It will be a big undertaking and expensive for me so I can only do it if it will be worthwhile.


Having said all that, unusually for me, I did buy a few things this year. I was on the look out for candles


and I found this beauty made by A Little Light whose work I have seen in various shops around town.


I found this lovely handspun wool perfect for doll's hair. I also found a lovely lady who may be able to supply me with alpaca wool to use as doll stuffing. The darker colours will be better for my dark skinned dolls.


This birdhouse won my heart to give Stephen as a thank you gift for fixing my camera after it froze last week and was going to cost $95 to repair.That was the $95 I had put aside for the craft fair. What a guy! He made birdhouses as Christmas gifts a few years ago and so is something of a connoisseur. Of course it helped that I'm rather partial to birdhouses my self.


Kate was in a rainbow mood for her trip to the fair wearing rainbow socks, her beloved rainbow bag and giving her rainbow boy a day out as well, all abandoned on the kitchen table after a hard day at the craft fair.

16 Responses to “Rainbow Day”

  1. Tasmania seems to be a truly lovely place to live. Thank you for sharing your life there so beautifully with us. I have noticed here in the United States that everyone seems to make the same dolls for craft fairs. They all make the rather distorted, elongated, kind of country ones that are for display, not for children. No one ever seems to make something original or childlike. They seem to just copy one another. Your dolls are lovely. Would the fair be a place that people would come expecting to spend quite a bit on one item ? I have a friend who makes baby quilts and sells them at craft fairs and she says that people all come to the fairs expecting to find a bargain.I sometimes wonder if she really makes enough on each quilt considering that they are all hand quilted. It looks like you all had a happy day.


    Mary L

  2. It is so gorgeous there! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Hi Mary, I wondered about the pricing too. Some of the stalls have very expensive items though, that is more than $100 and they have been going to the craft fair for some years so it must be worthwhile for them. Many people are looking for bargain prices but it seems to have established itself as a fair for high quality craft and most stall holders take credit card transactions. I think I would have to have a variety of prices/items to suit everyone.
    There was only one stall selling dolls suitable for children to play with and although they were inexpensive they were also inferior quality to my dolls I thought. The other doll stalls were china display dolls and country dolls meant for decoration.

  4. Sounds like a great time was had by all. The bird house is really neat. Mary

  5. Gosh...your love for your part of the world is always evident in your writing. It finds me longing to take a trip there! I love "Rainbow Boy!" Your dolls are so sweet.

  6. What beautiful pictures!! I absolutely love the candle!!


  7. I fell in love with Deloraine when I visited there 2 years ago. We only stayed there one night but I was captured by it's beauty and quiet pace of life. My sister is currently looking at buying a house there which would be wonderful as I would have an excuse to visit often ;)
    Your day there sounds wonderful with happy memories being created.

  8. Hi Jenny, thanks again for sharing such lovely pictures and your adventure at the craft fair. Looks like such a lovely place to visit!I really like that candle, and I have seen them made like that here in the states.


  9. What a lovely day you had, evident by your beautiful pictures. That candle is quite unique and very pretty.

  10. Now that is why I want to (will be one day) moving back to Tas! So beautiful.
    If you go in the craft fair, Ill fly down especially :)
    Lovely photos Jenny

  11. Looks like a lovey place to spend quiet time. Looks beautiful too.

  12. What a lovely day you had. You live in a truly beautiful place - I would love to visit someday! A girl can dream. :)

  13. Deloraine is such a beautiful place. It is lovely to see so much green and running streams.

    I thought that yarn was exquisite. Your dolls will have truly beautiful hair.

    Do let us know if you decide to set up a stall.


  14. The birdhouse is beautiful! I love the graceful scrolls, and I've never seen another like it.

  15. I just LOVE Tassie, lived there till I was 15, now I am in my late forties!!! But somehow, Tassie will always be home. Loved you photos, the candle and the birdhouse look amazing.


Thanks so much for taking the time to chat. I don't always have time to reply but I do read every message you leave.